Finaly a bad review on the Harbor Freight Purple Gun - Hot Rod Forum : Hotrodders Bulletin Board
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Old 05-19-2012, 08:35 AM
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Finaly a bad review on the Harbor Freight Purple Gun

Ok, I realize for $10 on sale it's expected that it's not going to be a great spray gun, but the 20oz Purple HVLP Harbor Freight Gravity gun is a complete waste of $10 in my opinion. I wouldn't take another one for free if it was given to me new in box. The Walmart $25 Campbell Hausfeld gravity feed is a better investment if a cheap gun is needed.

This is the one below. Although who knows how long the link will work because they change the model number so often most likely to avoid getting a bad reputation (which some have actually been ok I should add. But not this one).
http://www.harborfreight.com/20-oz-h...gun-47016.html

But here's my experience with it and maybe it'll save someone $10. In my case I spent $50 since I bought 5 of them for various colors after reading that they were decent guns. I didn't want to make another trip since I live far from HF, so I bought 5.

First impression... Sprays ok actually pretty decent for $10. But before I used the gun I took it apart and cleaned it. They use RTV or silicone caulk sealant in the nozzle to gun body connections and lots of it. They do this instead of a good metal to metal seal or copper crush washer like most other good guns would have. The fan adjustment knob is Chrome plated PLASTIC (yes plastic!) and if the gun body sits in thinner too long it turns into mush. A gun body should be built so it's able to be soaked in thinner for a period and the more metal parts the better. Also the plastic parts should hold up to solvents... not in this case. Also, the fan adjustment (when the knob is still there) is touchy and definitely not a fine adjustment. Another issue, the seal for the cup is a plastic ring that the cup seats into as it screws down onto the body. This ring splits after only a few uses, then the cup leaks since the ring/seal is no longer there. I fixed this using Teflon tape and it doesn't leak. Next problem, I noticed where the fan knob used to be (before the lacquer thinner melted the chromed plastic knob) now the o-ring doesn't want to stay in place and it leaks air pressure (maybe it wasn't sealing before but I just didn't notice since the knob hid where it was at).

So... the purple gun... In my opinion (for a person who makes money spraying paint) is a waste of $10 and cleaning time not to mention frustration. Maybe for someone who's not picky on how clean their work is (your work is only as clean as your environment/material/tools), or for someone who needs a one use gun for something unimportant, it might be ok. I'd still recommend a different gun. For me, this one was a piece of trash and a waste of time and money.

In summary: the gun is hard to get completely clean due to design. The gun uses caulk (makes it harder yet to get clean) in the nozzle connections, the fan knob is chromed plastic, the cup's plastic seal ring breaks shortly after first use and will need to be rigged to not leak paint, it leaks air underneath fluid knob. Really a botched together little piece and definitely not well engineered.

All that to say, it's possible to get a cheap gun that works decently. I used this HF model (says 4001 on the side of the body-binks copy I'm guessing) for several years when starting out and they worked fine:
http://www.harborfreight.com/detail-...gun-91011.html

They're easy to clean and a decent conventional siphon cup gun. I still use a few once in a while. I probably have had 20 of them over the past 6-7 years. It's still a disposable gun but better for HF cheap quality. The seals leak on these over time, but they work well for a good while and are easier to get completely clean.

In the end, a good gun is worth the price. I have an Iwata that I use for clear and it's almost enjoyable to clean. The fit of the nozzle to body is metal to metal with no plastic or rubber seals whatsoever (nozzle to body that is-the needle packing has plastic but it holds up to solvents) and they planned the threads and the metal alloy (slick and easy to brush clean) so that the gun would be easy to clean. Since I spray almost everyday, it's worth $400 new and I'd even rather clean up an old used Iwata if times were tight. I'm still all for good cheap guns since I like to use one gun dedicated to different shades of colors/metallics etc and it's hard to have 3-4 x $400 guns. But still with good cleaning, three color guns shouldn't be necessary. With the HF purple gun it is necessary because it's hard to get it spotless clean with the threads and the way they planned the nozzle to body fit as well as the RTV/Caulk. When you think about it my 20 x $15 on sale for HF guns (even the one I liked) is still almost the cost of a good gun. My guess is an Iwata would have lasted me 7 years and still sprayed like new. The HF throw aways... well, they worked good at first and as time went on, well they got thrown away. So... a good gun is cheap after all.

But that's my take on the HF Purple. Hopefully it helps someone.

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Last edited by 777funk; 05-19-2012 at 08:55 AM.
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Old 05-19-2012, 10:00 AM
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Amen Brother! And thanks for this write up. I bought one and did not take it apart first. On about the 5th use, the silicone inside broke loose and mixed with my topcoat paint!!! Ruined 3 panels that I had to sand down, reprime and reblock!!! I would have easily paid $100 not to have had that happen, cost me alot of extra work.

NOW, I have soaked and completely cleaned out a second purple gun I bought, used it for topcoats this morning and have no problems with it. It does what its supposed to do which is coat a panel with paint which will then be sanded out and buffed. Im sure a more expensive gun, or a better painter could lay the paint down alot smoother.

EVERYONE NEEDS TO KNOW ABOUT THIS SILICONE ISSUE WITH THESE GUNS !!

THIS SHOULD BE STICKIED. IT WILL SAVE SOMEONE ELSE ALOT OF

Andy
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:18 PM
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I don't understand.. I actually just used my own HF gun about 20 minutes ago and it worked great.. to shoot varathane on a wooden screen door frame. I bought the gun a few months ago just to try for myself and found many of the same issues mentioned above. If you want a "cheep" gun, I always recommend the Finex 3000. I own several other guns, but still like the Finex the best.

Russ
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Old 05-19-2012, 02:31 PM
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First problem - yours was not the purple 43430 Harbor Freight gun the world has come to "love". Your reference is to 47016.

An apple and an orange.

The 43430 will do a decent job and is NOT filled with silicone/RTV. I used one for a while, then 'graduated' to a good hobby gun than on to a pro level, more to cut back on overspray then for lack of a good experience with that gun.
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Old 05-19-2012, 02:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irelands child
First problem - yours was not the purple 43430 Harbor Freight gun the world has come to "love". Your reference is to 47016.

An apple and an orange.
Can you provide a HF link to the 43430? I can't.

Russ
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Old 05-19-2012, 03:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Northstar T
Can you provide a HF link to the 43430? I can't.

Russ
They were 'gone' from the shelves when I was there 3-4 weeks ago and probably the one noted above was supposed to be the replacement - it isn't the same gun. I ended up with a $25 (#91011) siphon feed to use with house paint instead (not about to use my Iwata or Devillbiss for thick Home Depot paint). I was surprised how well that 91011 one did plus the quality of build
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Old 05-19-2012, 09:18 PM
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I think the "better" purple gun comes with a regulator and runs about $40?

No, I have not tried that one.

The cheapies are fine as long as you take the time to clean all the crap out. I used one today and it sprayed great, minimal orange peel.

Andy
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Old 05-19-2012, 09:41 PM
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Harbor Freight #47016

I bought two of these guns because I clipped the coupon from the sales paper and needed something to spray primer with. I had been using the large gun from the 2 gun kit until it crapped out. I even bought extra 2.0 tips to spray 2K primer. I ran into the same problems with the RTV while cleaning. The seal on the bottom of the cup cracking. Didn't last 5 uses. I have tried the HF 66222, it works good enough for primer and base. You can't spray 2K primer either because they don't sell a larger tip than 1.4. But I would use my Devilbiss for the base anyway. It is what it is a cheap spray gun, use 1 time and throw away.
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Old 05-20-2012, 11:10 AM
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posted a bad review on a $10 spray gun?
what were you expecting for $10
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Old 05-20-2012, 11:47 AM
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The 40716 is not the replacement for the 43430, that is the 66222.

The 40716 is actually a purple version of the Campbell Hausfeld $25 gun walmart carries. I have both, but the CH version is worth the extra cost, but both guns are not great. they lay down paint 'ok'
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Old 05-20-2012, 03:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ogre
posted a bad review on a $10 spray gun?
what were you expecting for $10
well, i would expect it NOT to be LOADED with SILICONE!!! Is that too much to ask from a PAINT gun ?????

And you might be surprised how slick a $10 gun can lay down paint...





CLEAN FIRST !

Andy
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Old 05-20-2012, 10:25 PM
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Don't be ignorant and just dump paint right into gun and start painting. First you must rinse it out with solvent. I've used this exact gun at work with no problems, for $10 you can't say it's a bad gun.
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Old 05-21-2012, 04:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mitmaks
Don't be ignorant and just dump paint right into gun and start painting. First you must rinse it out with solvent. I've used this exact gun at work with no problems, for $10 you can't say it's a bad gun.
That's not what happened to me. I ran about half a cup of lacquer thinner through the gun before I ever used it. It worked fine for about the first 5 uses and after use cleanings (spraying solvent trough and cleaning the cup), THEN THE STUFF INSIDE TURNED TO GOO AND MIXED IN WITH THE PAINT.

Give me a small amount of credit here...

Andy
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Old 05-21-2012, 05:45 PM
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Originally Posted by novafreek6872
Give me a small amount of credit here...

Andy
your the one that bought a $10 spray gun
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Old 05-21-2012, 09:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ogre
your the one that bought a $10 spray gun
Doesnt really matter how much you spend on a spray gun if you are going to cut and buff anyway. Heck you could slap the paint on with a brush if you liked colorsanding THAT much. Its just a tool to get the paint from the can and on to the panel.

Why would someone who is trying to learn how to paint, but not really sure if they have what it takes to do it, or really know whether they will actually enjoy doing it after all, going to go out and spend hundreds on a professional grade spray gun??

Now THAT would be ignorant.

video of the "finished" fender...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oBtH9jSxgKs





Andy
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